Social media reaction to Polycarp Igathe's resignation

Saturday January 13 2018

Nairobi County Deputy Governor Polycarp Igathe.

Nairobi County Deputy Governor Polycarp Igathe. He resigned on January 12, 2018. PHOTO | SALATON NJAU | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By ELVIS ONDIEKI
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Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko appeared to have adopted US President Donald Trump’s early morning social media posting habit as he responded to Friday’s resignation of his deputy Polycarp Igathe by uploading a cryptic video early Saturday.

Mr Sonko posted a video of Eunice Njeri’s song Najua on his Facebook page at 3.19am, which he captioned with just one word: “Najua (I know).”

The chorus of the song, “Najua mkombozi wangu anaishi (I know my saviour lives),” and the message is intended to console those in trouble, that there is a living Superior Being.

The governor’s post elicited mixed reactions, with some followers condemning the county boss for his apparent failures and others urging him to forget about the Friday setback and focus on the task ahead.

Mike Sonko

Nairobi governor uploaded a video of Eunice Njeri’s song Najua on his Facebook page on Saturday at 3am. PHOTO | FACEBOOK

“Everything happens for a reason the Bible says that when Uziah died Isaiah saw the hand of the Lord. Our Redeemer lives,” one response said.

“Mike Sonko was a Member of Parliament without Igathe, he was a senator without Igathe. He can be governor without Igathe. Who is Igathe anyway?” another Facebook user typed.

“You failed to steer Nairobi to the right direction. Leadership is about delegation of responsibility. Inferiority complex gave you the fear to sabotage Mr Igathe,” posted another user.

Mr Igathe, on his side, spent his Friday evening and Saturday morning engaging his followers on Twitter, with most of his messages bearing his gratitude to the various compliments he was receiving for his shock resignation on Friday.

“I still do,” he replied to a Twitter user who had told him: “We believe you indeed meant the best for this county.”

“It is a done deal. Handing over as we speak,” Mr Igathe replied to a tweet from a user who had posted: “The best DG I have ever seen ...   Kindly reconsider your decision.”

QUITS

Mr Igathe on Friday evening shocked the country when he tendered his resignation from his deputy governor position, a post he had held for barely five months.

“I regret that I have failed to earn the trust of the governor to enable me to drive the administration and management of the county,” he said.

Mr Sonko later said in a statement that he had received the resignation and that he would issue a comprehensive statement later.

More than 12 hours since the news of the resignation came out, Kenyans were still taking to the social media to express their reactions.

By 11.15am Saturday, Mr Igathe was the trending subject on Twitter, with 19,800 tweets having been posted about him. Mr Sonko was the second in the trends, with 15,000 tweets.

One Facebook user called Achiro Dick was basking in glory because of a prediction he made a month before the August 8 General Election that Mr Igathe would one day quit office.

“There’s a complete lack of chemistry between these two individuals a month into the office and you’ll witness a complete breakdown in communication. And it won’t take long before Igathe quits office,” Mr Achiro had posted on July 6, 2017. “Archive this post because we’ll reopen it for a discussion should they win.”

The accuracy of his prediction was a source of all manner of jokes, with various Facebook users asking him to predict other outcomes.

“You may as well predict what will become of [Nasa leader] Raila’s swearing in,” a user posted.

“Predict for us if [Deputy President William] Ruto will stay in this marriage till death do us apart,” requested another.

“Give us prediction ya Mega jackpot,” teased another.